Australia plans to develop SAMBO for the Blind and Visually Impaired. FIAS

A meeting was held at the International Sambo Centre between the President of the Sambo Federation of Australia Savely Timofeev and the Chairman of the FIAS Commission for Athletes with Disabilities Roman Novikov. 

The main topic was the development of SAMBO for the Blind and Visually Impaired in Australia. Roman Novikov, Chair of the FIAS Commission, spoke about the discipline's achievements on the international stage: "Last year, SAMBO for the Blind and Visually Impaired was presented for the first time in the programme of the Asian and Oceania Championships in Kazakhstan, when totally blind sambists performed at the World Combat Games in Saudi Arabia. This year also promises to be historic - the World Sambo Championships will include competitions in "SAMBO for the Blind" (sporting class SVI1).

"This is a unique situation, because SAMBO is perhaps the only sport where blind and visually impaired sambists can compete on the same mat as sighted athletes. We are already receiving many applications from disabled athletes from different countries to take part in the championship. It is also important to understand that each of them will have to undergo classification to confirm that they meet all the standards for participation in such a tournament," he concluded.

Savely Timofeev (left) and Roman Novikov had a very useful conversation. FIAS
Savely Timofeev (left) and Roman Novikov had a very useful conversation. FIAS

In turn, Savely Timofeev provided information on the development of SAMBO in Australia, as well as the peculiarities of promoting the sport in this country. The National Federation has been successful in disseminating SAMBO in sports clubs, and is also constantly working to popularise this martial art through the media. The Federation has made it a priority to work with children and young people in order to attract athletes to SAMBO from an early age.

"The discipline of SAMBO for the Blind and Visually Impaired may well gain recognition in Australia. A lot is being done this country to ensure that people with disabilities do not feel restricted. And involvement in sport, where they can compete and express themselves, is one of the most powerful tools in this activity. We are very interested in the development of this discipline in Australia," Timofeev concluded.